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Children Orphaned by Covid to be Enrolled in Central, Navodaya and Sainik Schools: HP Govt

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Shimla-The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated families and has orphaned thousands of children. At least 577 children across the country were orphaned by COVID-19 between April 1 and May 25 alone, according to Women and Child Development Ministry.  At least seven children were orphaned by Covid in Himachal Pradesh till May 18, 2021. The worsen the situation, illegal adoptions are posing another risk of exposing these children to abuse and exploitation. 

Such children “are not only living an emotional tragedy, but they are also at high risk of neglect, abuse and exploitation”, says UNICEF India’s chief Yasmin Haque.

Also ReadCovid Orphans Seven Children in Himachal So Far, To be Placed Under Foster Care

The announcement came after the Supreme Court asked the government to take measures to ensure their basic needs fulfilled. The apex court had also directed the government to identify children who have lost their parents or the family breadwinner following the nationwide lockdown imposed in March 2020.

“Children in need must be taken care of…Understand their agony and address their needs immediately,” a bench of Justices L Nageswara Rao and Aniruddha Bose said on May 28, 2021. 

“The Covid pandemic has created an unprecedented situation and has a cascading effect on vulnerable children. Authorities must identify children who were orphaned due to the pandemic or otherwise and take steps to address their basic needs,” the bench had said.

Yesterday, the Central Government announced measures for such children who lost their parents due to Covid-19. 

Himachal Pradesh Government has also made announcements based on the PM-CARES for Children’ scheme.

Under the scheme, every such student would be enrolled as a beneficiary under Ayushman Bharat Yojna and the premium amount of these children would be paid by PM-CARES till they attain the age of 18 years.

The HP government claimed that under the Bal Seva Yojna, every such orphaned child would be provided Rs. 3500 per month out of which Rs. 2000 would be provided by the Central Government and Rs. 1500 by the State Government. The government would also give priority to admit such orphan children in Child Care Centres provided they are willing. Orphan girls would be given priority in admission in Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas. The State Government would also provide Rs. 51000 to orphan girls under the Mukhyamantri Kanyadaan Yojna, the state government claimed. 

Provisions of the ‘PM-CARES for Children’ scheme

All children who have lost both parents or surviving parent or legal guardian/adoptive parents due to Covid 19 will be supported under the ‘PM-CARES for Children’ scheme.

 

  1. Fixed Deposit in the name of the child: PM CARES will contribute through a specially designed scheme to create a corpus of Rs 10 lakh for each child when he or she reaches 18 years of age. This corpus:
  • Will be used to give a monthly financial support/ stipend from 18 years of age, for the next five years to take care of his or her personal requirements during the period of higher education and
  • On reaching the age of 23 years, he or she will get the corpus amount as one lump sum for personal and professional use.

 

  1. School Education: For children under 10 years
  • The child will be given admission to the nearest Kendriya Vidyalaya or a private school as a day scholar.
  • If the child is admitted to a private school, the fees as per the RTE norms will be given from the PM CARES.
  • PM-CARES will also pay for expenditure on the uniform, textbooks and notebooks.

 

  1. School Education: for children between 11-18 years:
  • The child will be given admission to any Central Government residential school such as Sainik School, Navodaya Vidyalaya etc.
  • In case the child is to be continued under the care of Guardian/ grandparents/ extended family, then he or she will be given admission to the nearest Kendriya Vidyalaya or a private school as a day scholar.
  • If the child is admitted to a private school, the fees as per the RTE norms will be given from the PM CARES.
  • PM CARES will also pay for expenditure on the uniform, textbooks and notebooks.
  1. Support for Higher Education:
  • The child will be assisted in obtaining an education loan for Professional courses / Higher Education in India as per the existing Education Loan norms. The interest on this loan will be paid by the PM CARES.
  • As an alternative, scholarship equivalent to the tuition fees/course fees for undergraduate/ vocational courses as per Government norms will be provided to such children under Central or State Government Schemes. For children who are not eligible under the existing scholarship schemes, PM CARES will provide an equivalent scholarship.
  1. Health Insurance
  • All children will be enrolled as a beneficiary under Ayushman Bharat Scheme (PM-JAY) with a health insurance cover of Rs. 5 lakhs.
  • The premium amount for these children till the age of 18 years will be paid by PM CARES.

 

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IPS Gaurav Singh and CM’s Security Personnel Exchange Slaps & Kicks, Video Goes Viral, Inquiry Ordered

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Kullu-Superintendent of Police, Kullu, Gaurav Singh, and Chief Minister’s Security Officers got into an ugly brawl outside the Bhuntar Airport in Kullu district on Wednesday. While Gaurav Singh reportedly slapped the security official, ASP, Brijesh Sood, after an argument broke out between the two, another security official of the Chief Minister was seen kicking Gaurav Singh.

The incident has jolted the State Police Department, as well as, the people as all of this ruckus occurred in the presence of Chief Minister and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari.

Video clips of this incident where personnel of the Himachal Pradesh Police exchanged slaps and kicks appeared on social media and are going viral across the nation.  

The incident has attracted widespread criticism over such indisciplinary actions from these high-rank officials. 

It’s pertinent to mention that Gaurav Singh is considered one of the most honest IPS officials serving in the State. His strict action against sand and drug mafia in Baddi industrial area had won him praise from the people. He was hailed as Baddi’s Singham at that time. He continues to work with the same zeal against drug mafia as the SP of Kullu district too. 

What Happened At Bhuntar Airport

According to the initial information available, Chief Minister Jairam Thakur had come to the Airport to welcome Gadkari, who is on a five-day visit to Kullu. When their convoy left the Airport, Gadkari noticed several people who had gathered outside to meet him and share their grievance related to insufficient compensation for the acquisition of land for the four-laning project. These people from the four-lane Sangharsh Samiti were waiting for the Minister outside the Airport.

Meanwhile, CM’s Security Official reportedly started arguing with the SP over allowing people to gather outside the Airport which caused an unscheduled halt for the Minister’s convoy. As per reports, Gadkari had himself asked to stop the car to listen to these people, which led to misunderstanding between the security of the Chief Minister and Chief of the local police. The argument turned into a violent brawl as the SP slapped Brijesh Sood.

Other officials present at the scene tried to intervene and control these officers. This entire episode occurred in front of the Chief Minister’s car.

The people at once rushed towards the spot shouting “ SP sahab ko kyon maar rahe ho (Why Are You Assaulting the SP)?”

Somehow, the remaining police personnel cleared the way for Chief Minister’s vehicle. The people were also heard shouting slogans in support of Gaurav Singh.  

Inquiry Ordered, Three Officials Removed from Duty Till Conclusion of Inquiry

Following this shocking incident, the PHQ came into action and the Director-General of Police, Sanjay Kundu, left for the spot. DIG Central Range, Madhusudan, had already reached the spot to conduct an inquiry into the matter.

The inquiry would be conducted under Section 63 of the HP Police Act, it was informed. 

The IG Intelligence was asked to immediately depute someone to perform the duties of Balwant, HPP, PSO to the Chief Minister immediate effect.

Further, the PHQ, in a statement, informed that till the conclusion of the preliminary inquiry into the incident, Gaurav Singh, Brijesh Sood and  Balwant, will remain on compulsory leave. The headquarters for Gaurav Singh was fixed to be the Range Office Mandi and PHQ Shimla for Brajesh Sood and Balwant Singh.

Further, the DIG CR Madhusudan would perform the duties of the SP Kullu, while the duties of Addl SP, CM Security, will be performed by Addl SP, IIIrd Bn Pandoh, Puneet Raghu.

Himachal Kisan Sabha Alleges the State Govt Didn’t Want Farmers to Meet the Minister

The Himachal Kisan Sabha also issued a statement in which it referred to the incident as another example of the state government’s anti-farmer attitude. The Sabha said that the farmers affected by the four-laning project only wanted to submit a memorandum to the Union Minister to convey their grievance peacefully and the Minister himself agreed to it. Despite this, an unnecessary brawl was created on the part of the Chief Minister’s security.  The Sabha supported the demand of the farmers for appropriate compensation for their land acquired for the project. 

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HP Govt Re-Shuffles 43 IAS/HAS Officials Including Eight DCs Ahead of By-Elections 2021

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Shimla-Himachal Pradesh Government has re-shuffled 43 IAS and HAS official. The transferred/posted officials include eight Deputy Commissioners. The orders came following the meeting of the HP Cabinet held yesterday.

This re-shuffle has also come ahead of the by-elections scheduled to be held in the state.

Neeraj Kumar, IAS (HP:2013) would be the new Deputy Commissioner, Lahaul & Spiti. Dr. Nipun Jindal, IAS (HP:2014), who was serving as the Managing Director, National Health Mission, HP, was posted as the new Deputy Commissioner, Kangra.

Ashutosh Garg, IAS (HP:2014) has been posted as the new Deputy Commissioner, Kullu. Arindam Chaudhary, IAS (HP:2014), was appointed as the new Deputy Commissioner, Mandi.

Ram Kumar Gautam, IAS (HP: 2014) was posted as the new Deputy Commissioner, Sirmaur. Pankaj Rai, IAS (HP: 2014), who was the Deputy Commissioner Lahaul has now been appointed as the Deputy Commissioner Bilaspur. Kritika Kulhari, IAS (HP:2013), was appointed as  the Deputy Commissioner, Solan. Earlier, she served as the Director, Women & Child Development, HP.

List of IAS/HAS Official Transferred/Given Charges

  1. Dr. Richa Verma, IAS (HP:2012), as Chief Executive Officer, Baddi Barotiwala, Nalagarh Development Authority (BBNDA). She was serving as the Deputy Commissioner Kullu, District, earlier.
  2. Kalyan Chand, IAS (HP:2011), as Director, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs, HP. He will also hold the charge of the post of Managing Director, Himachal Pradesh Minorities Finance and Development Corporation Shimla. He was serving as the Deputy Commissioner, Solan, earlier.
  3. Abid Hussain Sadiq., IAS (HP:2014) was posted as Deputy Commissioner, Kinnaur.
  4. Yunus, IAS (HP:2010), as Excise & Taxation Commissioner, Himachal Pradesh, Shimla.
  5. Hemraj Bairwa, IAS (HP:2013), as Mission Director, National Health Mission, HP. He was serving as Deputy Commissioner of the Kinnaur district.
  6. Rakesh Kumar Prajapati, IAS (HP:2012), as Director, Industrie HP. He will also hold charge of the post of Managing Director HP Industrial Development Corporation. He was serving as the Deputy Commissioner Kangra
  7. Subhasish Panda, IAS (HP:1997), currently, the Principal Secretary (Public Works Department was given additional charge of the post of Principal Secretary (Tourism & Civil Aviation).
  8. Devesh Kumar, IAS (HP:1998),  has been appointed as Secretary to Chief Minister. He will continue to hold the charge of the post of Secretary (General Administration Department, Secretariat Administration, Sainik Welfare and Parliamentary Affairs)  and the post of Managing Director, Himachal Pradesh Power Corporation Limited, Shimla.
  9. Rakesh Kanwar, IAS (HP:2007), as Secretary to Governor, Himachal Pradesh. He will also hold the charge of the post of Project Director, Zero Budget Natural Farming in the Department of Agriculture, Himachal Pradesh. State
  10. Amit Kashyap, IAS (HP:2008) as Director, Tourism & Civil Aviation, Himachal Pradesh, Shimla. He will also hold the charge of the post of Managing Director, Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation, Shimla.
  11. Capt. (Retd.) J.M. Pathania, IAS (HP:2008), as Managing Director, Himachal Pradesh Agro Industries Corporation Limited, Shimla. He will also hold the charge of the post of Managing Director, Himachal Pradesh Agro-Industrial Packaging India Limited.
  12. Rakhil Kahlon, IAS (HP:2008), as Director, Women and Child Development, HP.
  13. Manasi Sahay Thakur, IAS (HP:2009), as Managing Director, General Industries Corporation, HP.
  14. Rohan Chand Thakur, IAS (HP:2009), as Managing Director, HP Financial Corporation.
  15. Raj Krishan Pruthi, IAS (HP:2009), as Special Secretary (Agriculture) to the HP Govt. He will also hold the charge of the post of Director, Agriculture, HP. Earlier, he was posted as Deputy Commissioner, Sirmaur at Nahan, District Sirmaur.
  16. Vinod Kumar, IAS (HP:2009), as Managing Director, HP Backward Classes Finance & Development Corporation, Kangra.
  17. Chander Prakash Verma, IAS (HP:2010), as Special Secretary (Personnel) to the Government of Himachal Pradesh. He will continue to hold the charge of the posts of Special Secretary (Tribal Development) to the HP Govt-cum Additional Commissioner, Tribal Development, HP and Commissioner Departmental Enquiries, HP.
  18. Amarjeet Singh, IAS (HP:2010), as Director, Public Finance-cum-Public Enterprises-cum-Special Secretary (Finance) to the HP Govt. and Director, Treasuries, Accounts and Lotteries, Himachal Pradesh, Shimla.
  19. Rugved Milind Thakur, IAS (HP:2011), as Director, Rural Development & Panchayati Raj, Himachal Pradesh-cum-ex Officio Special Secretary (Panchayati Raj) to the HPGovt.He was earlier posted as the Deputy Commissioner Mandi, District Mandi.
  20. Lalit Jain, IAS (HP: 2011), as the Managing Director, HP State Civil Supplies Corporation Limited.
  21. Vivek Bhatia, IAS (HP:2011), as Director Department of Empowerment of Scheduled Castes, Other Backward Classes, Minorities and the Specially Abled, Himachal Pradesh, Shimla. He will also hold the charge of the post of Director, HP Institute of Public Administration.
  22. Gopal Chand, IAS (HP:2011), Special Secretary (MPP & Power and NCES the Government of Himachal Pradesh, who is holding the charge of the post of Director Youth Services and Sports, HP, was given charge of the post of Special Secretary (Industries) to the Government Himachal Pradesh.
  23. Devinder Kumar Rattan, IAS (HP:2012), as Secretary, Himachal Pradesh Public Service Commission.
  24. Manmohan Sharma, IAS (HP:2013), as Director, Urban Development, HP. He will also hold the charge of the post of Chief Executive Officer-cum-Managing Director, Shimla Smart City Ltd.
  25. Rohit Jamwal, IAS (HP:2014), as Labour Commissioner-cum-Director of Employment, Himachal Pradesh, Shimla. Earlier, he was serving as the Deputy Commissioner, Bilaspur.
  26. Apoorv Devgan, IAS (HP:2015), as Member Secretary, HP State Pollution Control Board.
  27. Mukesh Repaswal, IAS (HP:2015), as Director, Information Technology, HP. He will also hold charge of the post of Managing Director, HP Electronics Development Corporation.
  28. Dr. Priyanka Verma, IAS (HP:2015), as the Director (Personnel & Finance), HP Power Corporation Limited.
  29. Anurag Chander, IAS (HP:2016), as Special Secretary (Excise & Taxation and Public Works Department) to the HP Govt. He will also hold charge of the post of Director, Estates, HP.
  30. Sonakshi Singh Tomar, IAS (HP:2016), as Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development)-cum-Project Director, District Rural Development Agency, Sirmaur.
  31. Zaffar Iqbal, IAS (HP:2017), as Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development)-cum-Project Director, District Rural Development Agency. Solan.
  32. Shivam Pratap Singh, IAS (HP:2017),  as Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development)-cum-Project Director, District Rural Development Agency, Kullu.
  33. Kiran Bhadana, IAS (HP:2017), as Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development)-cum-Project Director, District Rural Development Agency, Shimla.
  34. Nivedita Negi, IAS (HP:2017), as Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development) cum-Project Director, District Rural Development Agency, Chamba.
  35. Kumad Singh, HPAS (2001), as Managing Director, HP Kaushal Vikas Nigam. She will continue to hold the charge of the post of Managing Director, HP Handicrafts and Handloom Corporation.
  36. Vinay Singh, HPAS (2001, as Director, Ayurveda, HP, Shimla.
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Sirmaur: Newborn Found Abandoned in a Pile of Cow Dung, Rescued by Police

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Image Credits: News18

Sirmaur- An abandoned newborn girl child was found in a pile of cow dung in Kamiyara Village in Rohnat, District Simraur on Tuesday.  A villager first sighted the newborn and informed the police.

According to the available information, a villager found the newborn on Tuesday morning while he was on his way to his fields. The man said that first, he heard some sounds arising from a pile of cow dung in the fields. When he approached the pile, he noticed an infant covered in blood and cow dung. He immediately informed the local police.

A team of police reached the reported location with a doctor and provided medical aid to the newborn. After initial treatment,  the newborn was shifted to Civil Hospital Shillai in a 108 ambulance. Mast Ram, SHO, Shillai Police Station confirmed the report and informed that further investigation to identify the parents of the infant was underway. He added that the priority was to save the baby. Before the identification of parents, it would not be possible to comment over the cause that compelled the parents to abandoned the child, the police said. 

A similar incident was reported at Rohnat Hospital a few years back, where an unmarried girl had given birth to a child in the hospital bathroom. The mother had thrown out her child from the bathroom window. The infant was later rescued by the police.

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